News

In order to facilitate alien contact, scientists reveal the identity of the earth to the universe

  If someone gets lost in the wilderness, he has two choices: one is that he can search for traces of civilization; the other is to start a fire, or write “SOS” in huge letters on the ground to make it easy for others found him. To scientists interested in the question of whether there are intelligent aliens, it seems we can do the same.
  For more than 70 years, astronomers in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) program have been scanning for radio or light signals from other civilizations. Many scientists are convinced that there are more than 300 million potentially habitable planets in the Milky Way, many of which are home to life, and it is very likely that some life forms have developed intelligence and technology. So far, however, we have not detected a signal from another civilization, and the scientific community has dubbed the mystery the “Great Silence.”
  SETI has long been part of mainstream science, while messaging extraterrestrial intelligence (METI) is not a common practice.
  In the coming months, two teams of astronomers will send messages into space in an attempt to connect with intelligent alien life that might be listening in space.
  These efforts are like building a big bonfire in the woods and hoping someone finds you.
  The History of Contacting Extraterrestrial Life
  Early attempts to contact extraterrestrial life were like unrealistic messages in a bottle.
  In 1972, NASA launched the “Pioneer 10” space vehicle to Jupiter. The aircraft carried a gold-plated aluminum plate with a line drawing of a man and a woman, as well as a symbol showing where the aircraft came from.
  In 1977, NASA went one step further and added the famous Gold Record to the Voyager 1 spacecraft.
  These vehicles, along with their counterparts, Pioneer 11 and Voyager 2, have now left the solar system. But in the vast expanses of space, the odds of these objects or any other entities being found by alien life are slim to none.
  Electromagnetic radiation is a more effective beacon
  In 1974, astronomers sent the first beam of radio messages designed for alien ears from the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. A sequence of ones and zeros, used to convey simple information about humans and biology, was sent to the M13 globular cluster. Since M13 is 25,000 light-years away from Earth, you don’t have to hold your breath for an answer.
  In addition to these deliberate attempts to send messages to aliens, stray signals from television and radio broadcasts have been leaking into space for nearly a century. This cacophony from Earth is like an expanding bubble that has already reached millions of stars.
  However, there is a huge difference between a well-focused radio wave broadcast by a massive telescope and a diffuse leak—the faint signal from a 1950s soap opera like “I Love Lucy” shortly after leaving the solar system , it will become weaker and weaker, and the intensity is lower than the background radiation left by the Big Bang.
  Nearly half a century after the radio message from the Arecibo Observatory, two international teams of astronomers are planning a new attempt to contact aliens.
  One team is using a huge new radio telescope, and another team is picking a convincing new target.
  Sometime in 2023, FAST will send a new message. The telescope has a diameter of 500 meters and shoots a series of radio pulses over a wide area of ​​the sky. These switching pulses are like many 1s and 0s in digital information. This piece of information, called a “galactic beacon,” includes prime numbers, mathematical operators, biochemical information, a human shape, the location of the Earth, and a timestamp. The team sent the message toward millions of stars near the center of the Milky Way, 10,000 to 20,000 light-years away from Earth. This move will maximize the screening range of potential alien life, but it also means that the Earth may not hear back until tens of thousands of years later.
  Another team is targeting just one star, but the move has the potential to be echoed much faster. On October 4, 2022, a team from the Goonhilly satellite station in the UK will send a message towards the star TRAPPIST-1. This star has 7 planets, 3 of which are similar to Earth. TRAPPIST-1 is only 39 light-years away from us, so we only have to wait at least 78 years for intelligent life to receive the information and then to hear back on Earth.
  Ethical Controversy over Earth’s Self-Revealing Identity The prospect of
  contacting aliens is fraught with ethical questions, and METI is no exception.
  The first question is: who speaks for the planet? In the absence of consultation with the people of various countries, the decision-making power of what information to send and where to send it is only in the hands of a very small number of scientists who are interested in it.
  Plus, there’s a much deeper problem here: if you get lost in the woods, it’s obviously a good thing to be found. As for whether humans should broadcast information to aliens, the answer is less clear-cut.
  Before his death, renowned physicist Stephen Hawking was outspoken about the dangers of communicating with technologically advanced aliens. He argues that aliens may have malicious intentions, which could destroy humanity if we give Earth’s location.
  Of course, there are also many scientists who believe that there is no additional risk, because a truly advanced civilization must have already known about the existence of humans. Moreover, this matter is also related to interests.
  To date, there is no international regulation governing METI, so the experiment will continue.
  For now, intelligent aliens still exist only in the realm of science fiction. Liu Cixin’s “Three-Body Problem” offers a somber and thought-provoking perspective on what METI might look like after its successful attempt. In the “Three-Body Problem” novel, the end of mankind is not very good. If humans do contact aliens in reality, I hope the aliens can visit peacefully.

error: Content is protected !!